The next day Ji-Seong determined to confront Soo Hae, tried to find a moment to talk to her, but she continually avoided him. The opportunity came at lunchtime.
“I don’t want to talk about it.”
“If you don’t, I’ll talk to Gong Won.”
“Please, please don’t do that. Oppa will set Seoul on fire if he finds out.”
“So, you really are a knight?”
Soo Hae began to cry, “please don’t tell, please, Ji-Seong, my life will be ruined.”
“Why Soo Hae?”
Soo Hae wiped her tears with her sleeve, “last year was challenging, I had to keep up my grades, and there was all this pressure at home. I needed to be eligible for Lee Seongsaeng’s class, and for that, I had to study, but I was exhausted. So I started taking these pills supposed to stimulate my brain called Brinks Blue. I got immediate results except I became addicted, so I bought more, and I one point, I don’t know how I owed thousands of dollars to the dealers who work for Hyeon Ju.”
“Geumanhae [stop there], I know how the story goes,” Ji-Seong said.
“You do? Don’t tell me, even you.”
Ji-Seong could read the surprise on Soo Hae’s face.
The silence made everything clear.
“Hyeon Ju is a witch; I figured it out she has tabs on almost any rich kid in Seoul, and she has people working for her everywhere where one of us can appear. All this isn’t a coincidence Ji-Seong, trust me.”
Ji-Seong believed her; it was the first time the man met a Knight in his entourage; it was both reassuring in a twisted kind of way and frightening.
Ji-Seong couldn’t get Soo Hae’s tearful face out of his mind; she was intelligent, beautiful, and had promising perceptive. Nam Soo Hae wasn’t a girl to be caught in Hyeon Ju’s web.
Despite his efforts, Ji-Seong couldn’t shrug of Soo Hae’s confession. He decided to meet the only person who could enlighten him.
Ji-Seong, wow, I thought I’d never see you again. What brings you here? Are you ready to get back to work?” The woman asked with a smirk.
“How much does Nam Soo Hae owe you?”
“Owe? I think you are mistaken. What did she tell you?”
“Soo Hae is a Knight.”
“Oh, good Lord, Ji-Seong, is it what she said?” Hyeon Ju lifted her head backward as she chuckled, “this girl is fabulous, a true marvel amongst God’s creations. Why are you so serious? Do you want to save her?”
Ji-Seong stepped up and placed his hands on Hyeon Ju’s desk,” what’s so funny?”
“You, trying to be a hero, Ji-Seong, you must have seen it too. Soo Hae’s monster is bigger than yours and mine.”
“Does Soo Hae work for you or no?”
“She does, but don’t assume you all have the same job. Nam Soo Hae is a collector; she collects all the data about your rendezvous and does the statistics because all of this is only mathematics. Yes, she did owe me money, but Nam Soo Hae decided to work for me as you. She seems to have taken a liking to it. If I didn’t believe her capable of eating my son alive, I would consent to their union for Nam Soo Hae is one in a million.”
“What was she doing at the hotel?”
“I told you she was collecting the data; one of her hobbies is hacking. I’ll let you imagine what kind of things she collects.”
“You sent her to spy on me?”
“No, Ji-Seong, you and her studying together that was a coincidence. I mean, I didn’t know you would transfer to Yonsei. Please don’t attempt to see more darkness than there already is.”
Seeing how Hyeon Ju happily swayed on her chair Ji-Seong knew she wasn’t lying and that she was pretty amused by the situation, he turned to leave.
“So Ji-Seong, when can I expect you to put on your knightly armor?”
The man stopped on his tracks, a part of him wanted to respond, but Ji-Seong knew it would only bring a broader smile of satisfaction on Hyeon Ju’s face. He pursued his stride and left the office.
Ji-Seong didn’t know who to believe. On the one hand, he had Hyeon Ju, the puppeteer who made everybody dance on their string, and on the other hand, there was Nam Soo Hae.
One could say she was the Black Widow’s apprentice, Hyeon Ju was right, Soo Hae’s monster was probably the one who ruled them all.
Angelic in appearance, Soo Hae had the undetectable persona, which would let her get away with murder.
The hairs on Ji-Seong’s arm rose as he approached Soo Hae. The young woman wasn’t just one of Sa rang’s fans. She was a spy.
“Is it true?”
“What?” Soo Hae asked bluntly.
Ji-Seong glared, “that you collect information for her?”
Soo Hae took off her glasses as she replied, “yes.”
Ji-Seong didn’t expect such a direct answer; the Soo Hae who stood in front of him was different, her eyes were sharp, emotionless, and they seem to want to swallow him.
“Why do you do it?”
“I don’t know, and to be honest, I don’t care, Ji-Seong, you see, the difference between you and me is, you are a fake. You’re a human boy trying to be a monster, but me, I’m Pinocchio, a wooden girl without a soul. Nothing has a meaning for me; my beast is curious. I’m a curious being thriving on the information. I had a crush on you, I thought we were alike, but I was mistaken. No one is like me, even Hyeon Ju.”
In-Soo Hae’s eyes, Ji-Seong saw no void, sadness, or trauma. The woman said she was Pinocchio, but Ji-Seong thought the correct term would be a computer.
“Here,” Soo Hae said, stretching out her hand and breaking the silence.
“What is it?”
“It’s the data I have on you and professor Lee; I didn’t hand it over to Hyeon Ju.”
“Because I like the professor and you, I know Lee Seonsaengnim is sick. Leave the knights and Hyeon Ju, take care of the professor, the wind is turning, go before everything backdrafts.”
“What’s going on here?” A familiar voice from behind Soo Hae said.
Before Ji-Seong could react, the young woman sneaked behind his back and hugged her brother, “Oppa, I want to die; I just got rejected.
“Mwo, what, Ji-Seong rejected you?”
Gong Won turned an angry gaze to Ji-Seong, who immediately rolled out the following phrase of Soo Hae’s screenplay.
“I’m sorry, but I can’t date your sister.”
“You, son of-, how dare you, turn down my sister.”
“But, Oppa, I thought you hated him.”
Gong Won felt dumb as he watched Ji-Seong walk past them.
Soo threw a little wink at Ji-Seong that made him realize they were all in the gambling house where some were draughts on a chess game and others players of a poker game.
At that instant, it appeared Soo Hae possessed a full House set.